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Diasporas and territories

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  1. Introduction
  2. Popular wall paintings
  3. Painting in Society
  4. Instrumentalization and commodification

The phenomenon of diasporas is old, but there has witnessed a renewed interest in international relations after the Second World War and the acceleration of international migration. In the history of religions, the term was reserved for the dispersion of the Jews exiled from their country. In the early twentieth century, it was extended to the Armenians driven from their land. In recent decades, the concept of diaspora has lost its tragic connotation: it refers to expatriate communities that maintain a common identity, which kept references and practices referring to their home countries and are organized in relation to collective .

If the meaning of the concept has evolved over time, its relation to space and territory appears to have retained its ambivalence: the significance of diaspora plays to territorial logic, but many of them have meaning, paradoxically, that is a reference to a native area. The concept of diasporas come into play in identity reference. In addition, the territory is one of the components of the material reality of the nation state and its sovereignty. The logic returns to question the relevance of the concepts in the analysis of global spaces: the state border and sovereignty.

The growing importance of diasporas from the end of the Cold War and their recent developments lead us to replace the traditional concept of territorialization of identities and identification of territories with a more modern vision, that of deterritorialization of identities. But more generally, do diasporas call into question the very European reading of the global space in terms of states, sovereignty and borders? Should we consider these notions obsolescent and thus overcome them?

Indeed, the concept of diaspora seems to escape any territoriality, as trans-state communities succeed today, thanks to new technologies, to build networks of various kinds which question the conventional categories of analysis of the global space. But it would be premature to announce the end of the States on behalf of the diaspora, because they are still imbued with reference to territoriality.

The concept of diaspora seems to escape any territorial understanding and challenge the dominance of the major concepts commonly used in the analysis of international relations.

Diasporas cannot subsist in multiplying and maintaining the flow of various types that tend to go beyond the territorial perspective of trans-state communities.
Historically, the term "diaspora" has long been limited to the religious dimension. In fact, the inclusion of religion in the spiritual world tends to keep it separated from the territorial division into units, particularly in the States. The diaspora is emblematic of these phenomena which relativize the considerabl universal perception of territories.

But beyond the religious origin of the term, diaspora, by definition, reject the traditional concept of territoriality, by excluding it twice: first, this community is scattered, and plays by the borders, but also refuses to reduce for the European nation-state, as expatriates maintain perceptions and practices referring to their home countries, not only to their homeland. Men living in diaspora are "marginally intersecting" without being fully integrated in their host countries, they nevertheless create a division.

Tags: diaspora, refugees, expatriate, Jews

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